When the First Cadillac Was Made and Other Interesting Facts

September 6th, 2018 by

Have you ever wondered when the first Cadillacs were made? Read on to find out when the first Cadillac was made and other interesting facts about Cadillacs.

In 2017, Cadillac had a record-breaking year. The company sold more than 356,000 vehicles worldwide. It was the second highest sales since its inception.

Cadillac is known for quality, but did you ever wonder when the first Cadillacs were made?

Read on to learn more about Cadillac’s history and other interesting facts. You may be surprised by how innovative this automaker was.

Cadillac’s Historical Highlights

  • Cadillac was formed on August 22, 1902, and is one of the world’s oldest automobile brands.
  • Cadillac is second oldest US automaker after Buick.
  • Henry Leland named this luxury auto brand after Antoine de La Mothe Cadillac, who founded Detroit. Cadillac’s crest was designed to resemble de la Mothe’s coat of arms.
  • The Tonneau and Runabout were Cadillac’s first automobiles and were produced shortly after its inception. The first Cadillac was made in Detroit.
  • In the first year of production, Cadillac created about 2,500 cars, which was an impressive number back in those days. The first Cadillac cost $850.
  • Cadillac’s slogan is “Standard of the World,” which was proved when it built the first American car to win the Royal Automobile Club’s Dewar Trophy.
  • General Motors purchased Cadillac in 1909 for $4.5 million. By then, Cadillac was already known as one of the premier luxury autos.
  • Cadillac’s primary market is the U.S., but they’re also sold in Canada, China and 34 other countries.
  • Cadillac has the fastest V8 sedan and set a world record at German’s infamous Norburgring testing track.

Famous Cadillacs

There are famous Cadillacs out there, including Al Capone’s and the President’s Cadillac One. Let’s take a look at those two famous vehicles.

Capone’s Mobile Crime Wave

Al Capone’s Cadillac was the first bulletproof limo. This famous gangster was a big Cadillac fan and had a 1928 sedan that was fully armored for his protection.

After Capone was arrested, the government seized this vehicle. President Franklin D. Roosevelt later used this vehicle after the attack on Pearl Harbor to go to the House of Representatives and deliver his famous “Day of Infamy” speech.

Roosevelt showed his gratitude with his sardonic comment, “I hope Mr. Capone doesn’t mind.”

Capone owned other Cadillacs, including his favorite getaway car – the 1929 model. Paramount Pictures bought and used it in several gangster movies including The Godfather. This car even had authentic bullet holes in the side.

Cadillac One – The President’s State Car

We know Air Force One keeps the President and his staff safe in the sky, but did you know he also has a Cadillac to keep him secure on the road? This vehicle, “The Beast,” boasts several defensive characteristics and life-saving features.

  • The current model was first used January 20, 2009, for President Barack Obama’s inauguration.
  • The engine is a V8 super-charged diesel Duramax 6.6 liter engine.
  • No one can move “The Beast” easily – it weighs an astonishing 14,000 pounds. Just how big is that? The average Toyota Camry weighs 3,200 pounds.
  • The President can run conferences using the car’s encrypted phone and video system.
  • It always carries two pints of the President’s blood type and oxygen for emergencies.
  • There are no keyholes in its doors. Only Secret Service agents can open the passenger doors.
  • No one wants to mess with this car – it’s armed with rocket grenades, tear gas, shotguns and an armored gas tank.
  • Additional defense features include five-inch bulletproof glass and an interior that can be sealed off from a biological/chemical attack. Its underbelly is protected from mines with a Kevlar mat.
  • Unlike other vehicles, its tires still work when flat. Also, if a wheel rolls off, the car can drive on its rims.
  • Unfortunately, you’ll never see “The Beast” in a museum. For safety precautions, it’s destroyed when retired. The government then tests its effectiveness by shooting the vehicle with bullets and explosive rounds.

Cadillac’s Firsts

Cadillac revolutionized the auto industry when it introduced electrical systems, created interchangeable parts, developed three engines (including the V8) and led the way in technological advancement. Here are some firsts from Cadillac:

  • Cadillac invented the electric starter in 1912. The term “cranky” was originally used to describe the bad moods of drivers after they struggled to crank-start their cars.
  • The first V-8 engine was installed in 1915 in all of Cadillac’s models.
  • Cadillac was the first car with electric lights, including high-beams or brights.
  • In 1954, Cadillac was the first to offer power steering and automatic windshield wipers as standard equipment.
  • Proving that these cars were cool rides, in 1964Cadillac invented climate control managed by a thermostat.
  • We are all familiar with military night vision equipment. The DeVille was the first car equipped with night vision to detect objects with little lighting so drivers were safer.
  • Air bags don’t seem like a big deal now because every car has several. Cadillac was the first to install airbags in its vehicles.

Are You in the Market for a Cadillac?

As you can see, Cadillac is an impressive automobile that does set the standard in quality.

Looking for your first Cadillac? Contact us today to shop for your new or used Cadillac. We have several new and used vehicles for you to drive. We’re here to help you find and buy your new Cadillac.

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